SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich.—A youth mentoring program will soon be coming to Chippewa County. The Chippewa Allied Mentoring Program (CAMP) is a collective effort between the Boys & Girls Club of Bay Mills (BGBC), Sault Area Schools and Chippewa County’s 50th Circuit Court-Family Division. The CAMP will be based at Malcolm High School and is open to all area youth in grades 6 – 12. The CAMP will be guided by the Boys & Girls Club with a focus on mentoring.
Sandy Walden, BGBC director, said the idea evolved slowly. “Whenever Club staff is out in the community wearing the Boys & Girls Club logo, we are constantly asked when a club site will open in the Sault. Then, in the spring of 2015, Magistrate/Referee Eric Blubaugh, from the 50th Circuit Court-Family Division, gathered a small group of community professionals together to discuss the need for a countywide youth mentoring program. It really just took off from there.”
From those initial meetings, a core group formed to move the project forward including Blubaugh, the BGBC, Chippewa County’s juvenile probation officers Steve Ewing and Brianne Abramson, Malcolm High School Principal Sandy Sawyer and Malcolm High School Native American Advisor Rob McRorie.
McRorie said, “The investment we make in our youth today will determine who they become as citizens and leaders in the future and I believe that the Boys and Girls Club will give them the tools and experiences they will need to become successful adults.”
Blubaugh said that the CAMP will be open to all area youth, whether they are involved with the courts, or would simply like to be part of a positive environment. “This beneficial partnership is designed to give our youth consistent and supportive guidance from adults ready to help them succeed,” he said.
Programming, which will involve area colleges and schools, will run from mid-October to the beginning of June, with a targeted opening day of Oct. 18, 2016. Club hours will be Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 2:50 to 6:30 p.m.